Thursday, October 07, 2010

Edward Ehlinger: latest “Spotty” medallion winner!

[Insurance is] meant for life's uncertainties, but illness is actually a pretty sure thing

the_spotty Dr. Edward Ehlinger wrote an op-ed in yesterday’s Star Tribune that earns a Spotty™. Here are the opening grafs:

For once I agree with Jason Lewis -- sort of. Using an insurance model to cover preexisting health conditions doesn't make any sense, as he says ("Government health care is on the way," Oct. 1).

But I would take his notion a step further. Using an insurance model for basic and essential health care also doesn't make any sense.

Insurance is a great mechanism that people can use to offset their risk of losing some material thing of great value like their house, boat, car or jewelry. It can also be used to protect a valuable personal occupational asset like a voice for an opera singer, a hand for a surgeon or a knee for a football player. And it can be useful in providing protection from a singular catastrophic event like a malpractice suit or the premature loss of life.

But for something that is predictable, ongoing, needed by everyone, or necessary for the welfare of our community, an insurance model makes absolutely no sense. That's why we don't use an insurance model to provide police or fire services or to provide an education to our children. For these we use the tax model. Basic essential health care should also be in this category.

Please read the whole thing.

Remember, boys and girls, a Spotty™ is awarded to the author of an op-ed piece, a letter to the editor, or a blog post or comment that Spot wishes he had written himself.

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